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2019-07-14 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Musings , 504 references Ignore this thread
One Little Transformer Fire....
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I'm sure you've heard about last night.

NYC had a transformer fire.  It happens, especially when you don't do things like maintenance, even if it's just looking around.  You don't notice that this one is rusty and leaking some of its cooling oil, or that one has connections to it that are running hotter than they should. Then bad things happen, like catching on fire.

60,000 people were plunged into the dark in NYC.

This was either a pure accident (unlikely) or deferred maintenance (almost-certainly.)  It wasn't an intentional act.  ConEd didn't have someone go down a manhole and blow something up.

But they could have had that happen.

This was one reasonably small transformer in one hole.  They fixed it, and the power comes back on.  Inconvenience, yes, but nothing catastrophic.

A few hundred dedicated men, willing to die in pursuit of making it really bad, could do exactly that.

They could at any time.

They could in your city.

They could in a number of cities at once.

And if they were as few as a thousand they could wreck most of the large cities in this nation -- leaving them without power and no way to recover for months -- or more.  Within days the mob of "diversity" would take care of the rest; months later there would nothing left to restore power to.

So long as those men were dedicated but not coordinating, there's literally no warning that anyone would have, nothing to interdict and nobody to bust before it happened.

Instead of a little transformer for which ConEd has many extras laying around the disruption could easily target things either in importance or number that there are no spares to cover with.

Many of these items are bespoke; they're very large, very expensive, and nobody keeps enough of them around to have an extra just laying in a back room somewhere.  If you have to order one it takes weeks or months to be built and shipped.  If there's another compatible unit somewhere it's hours or days away.  It frequently won't fit on a tractor trailer, at least not a "regular" one.  Sometimes it won't fit down the road it has to go down without closing it both ways -- very disruptive, very visible, and very easily interdicted when replacement is attempted.  One guy with a common hunting rifle can trivially put several holes in it from hundreds of yards away at which point that "replacement" is worthless too.  Yes, he'd be caught immediately but that doesn't make the holes disappear.

Then what?

To be sure anyone involved in such a thing will be hunted down.  You can bet on it.  They'll be Public Enemy #1.  I'll bet against them even getting a trial; they'll just be shot.

But that won't get the power back on.

Our cities of today are flat-out not survivable without electrical power.  Modern buildings have sealed windows; without powered ventilation they become intolerable within hours. Nobody climbs -- or descends -- 30 or 50 floors of stairs more than once.  Traffic cannot move without signals; there aren't enough cops to hand-direct traffic over anything beyond a modest area even if they weren't otherwise occupied -- and they would be.  Without street and building lights at night there's a mugger -- or worse -- around every corner.  You can't park, or get out of a parking garage; there are no lights, there is no way to process your money or print a ticket for your car.  Airports can't function; while critical functionality is backed up with generators for a while (e.g. ATC) the terminals are not, other than for emergency lights.  Ordinary business functions cease instantly; the corner store is closed immediately, nearly all ATMs stop working, the cash registers everywhere shut down and the subways do not run.  If you use the subway to get to and from work and are at work you're screwed.  All food store frozen and refrigerated cabinets violate safe temperature limits within a few hours; inside of 24 hours not only is the food rotting and worthless the stench, especially if there's fresh fish in there, would be unbelievable.  The downtown hotels can't check you in or make key cards -- not that you'd be willing to walk up 14 flights of stairs to your room.  Without booster pumps running any building more than 10 floors or so tall has no water; ~15psi of pressure is 33', more or less, and most utilities run in the 40-50psi range.  Beyond 100' above ground level unless the pumps run there's no water.  Many high-rises have tanks in a mechanical space near the roof for this very reason but when they're empty there's no way to refill them.  (This, by the way, is why there are standpipe connections on buildings; if there's a fire the in-building booster pumps may be compromised, and without them the firefighters can't get water up beyond the 10th floor or so to put it out!)  Without lift pumps and the ability to scavenge the sewers it's just a matter of time before flushing a toilet results in the street being filled with sewage -- or worse, backing up into the lower levels of the building.  While that infrastructure almost-certainly has diesel generator backup to run it you need fuel.  To get fuel you need clear and available roads or other means to bring it in.  How do you do that when the streets are impassably gridlocked?

Our cities of today have effectively no possible way to generate sufficient energy inside their borders.  The screaming lefties won't let local generation take place -- so it doesn't.  Most larger cities, such as Chicago, are lucky to generate a fifth of what they need within a defensible perimeter -- or less.  The rest comes from outside sources, and to get there it has to be carried on wires, regenerated on a routine basis if AC (due to phase lag it must routinely go through transformers with distance) and if DC then while there's no phase lag consideration there is conversion required on at least the consuming end and, unless produced by solar, on the generating end as well.

Even our smaller cities have shut down their municipal generation.  I know of several.  It used to be utterly common for a smaller city or town to have its own power plant.  I was shocked to learn these had all been mothballed or torn down as that means those "suburban" areas and smaller towns are also dependent on the "mega generators" somewhere else, and they're just as vulnerable as the big city is.  Some of them have argued cost, but most are yet another victim of the enviroweenie screamfest garbage.  Make that waste and smog there, not here.  No smokestacks -- where you can see them.  Where someone else's kids get poisoned?  No problem.

But your local municipal water tower must have power to pump that water up there and run it through its purification processes just like the big city with its larger pumps or you have no pressure in your tap.  It must also have a supply of disinfectant (typically chlorine or chlorine dioxide) to disinfect said water and maintain its safety while in the water mains and pipes or you can't drink it without boiling it first, and the chemical plant requires electricity.  If the water in your tap is not drinkable without being boiled first how are you going to boil said water and for how long can you do that?  If your water heater is electric with no power you have no hot water.  If you're on a well and have no power to your property that nice pump down the hole you paid $10,000 or more to drill is worthless. Your furnace or A/C does not run.  If you're not able to back that up with something that doesn't require electricity (e.g. a pot-bellied wood-burning stove), and it's cold outside, you're screwed.  If you have a propane tank you may think you're ok but you're wrong; the company that fills your tank has to have power in order to run the pump that fills the truck's tank and the same is true upstream from them!  Whatever you have in your tank at the time it happens is all you'll have until the power comes back.

"But the farms will be ok, so if you're out of the cities you'll be fine" you say.  Really?  What milks the cows?  What runs the pump that puts diesel into the tractor?  How about those irrigation systems you see all over the heartland -- do you think they run without power?  Are even smaller farming operations able to continue at all on the farm of today without electrical supply?  That small farm operation you think will be perfectly fine is almost always on a private well and septic -- and guess what the well needs to pump the water out of the hole?  Electricity.

When there is no hustle and bustle around starting a backup generator is like throwing red meat at starving dogs.  You'll be able to hear it from a mile away or more.  You and your lovely farmhouse may have a nice extended family with four or five people in it who can offer a decent degree of defensive firepower but against a hundred people who hear the generator and realize there's water available there you're going to be overrun or burned out of the house and die.  Oh by the way, you can survive for weeks without food but only a day or two without drinkable water.  If you think people won't immediately riot, loot, burn and kill over not having access to it you're very wrong.

There are plenty of people who scream about the possibility of another Carrington Event sort of thing.  I, personally, don't worry all that much about that specific issue.  Why?  Because we'll get plenty of warning and they'll shut the grid down.  Oh sure, the city will be dark for a day -- or a few.  But the gear won't be destroyed; they'll turn it off and ground all ends.  Bet on it.  That's the thing about space weather; like a hurricane for the most part we really can and do see it coming.

No, the real problem is more-likely to be human-caused than a natural phenomena.  I don't buy most of the doomer EMP scenarios; especially not one that would have an effect over a large swath of the nation.

But a small, dedicated and uncoordinated group of *******s?

That ought to keep you awake at night.

This time it was just bad luck, or the power company not paying attention to maintenance.

This time.

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Fumei
Posts: 56
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That small, dedicated and uncoordinated group of *******s doesn't concern me. What concerns me are the large, dedicated and coordinated groups of evil bipeds that wilfully endeavour to turn Amerika und die ganze Welt into a paradise for the sociopathic ruling class, a pleasant abode for the goons, and a gulag for everyone else. The Amerikan public squanders it's numerical advantage by being unwilling to go on a general strike, etc. Those *******s, the neo-luddites, would actually take actions that could stop that, though the casualty rates would be sky-high for every side.
Amused
Posts: 52
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Scenarios like this should make it the greenies move towards more distributed storage for all of those Solar installations.

Supposedly the guy that did the lithium ion has a new like lithium glass battery design he is licensing that is supposed to provide all of the benefits of the gel packs without the boom, so we may actually see a real distributed grid where each neighborhood or district has it's own Kilopower pack to regulate voltage and provide juice when the sun doesn't shone.

Supposedly. I haven't read a lot about it and it will take 50 years for that to happen but that seems like the logical direction with where we are headed.
Tickerguy
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@Amused - Meh.

Solar cells require energy to make them. There's no free lunch in the world. I am always amazed at people who claim to be intelligent but think that something goes into a higher energy state all on its own, from which it then delivers said energy in a way useful to you.

It's magic!

The **** it is. That process may be put somewhere you don't see it but it happens. Oil and coal had it happen millions of years ago by this flaming yellow nuclear furnace way the **** out there in the sky. Solar cells didn't have it happen that way; you have to do it HERE, and to do it you have to put the energy IN to organize that disparity of electronegativity the way YOU want it.

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Winding it down.
Oliver1655
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Our High School Science teacher had us watch a series of programs on VHS tape called "Connections" almost 40 years ago.

Again, none of this should be new but is yet again a classic example of everyone forgetting their history and the lessons of the past and thinking they are smarter or more technologically advanced where these things simply can't happen anymore.

These programs tied events throughout history together and showed how one thing brought about something else.

One episode dealt with how a small power relay triggered the whole earlier New York blackout.

If you have not viewed the episode or series it is worth a watch.

Here is the full episode on Youtube.



The pertinent part describing the aftermath of a power blackout is at 22:28 and the classic remark at around 28:24 in.

"Do you know the difference between an ear of corn and a geranium seed?"

Once again, as this year has demonstrated, mother nature can be a real bitch and can send a a series of cascading events along that will wreck nearly any paltry thing that man has to put up against her.

Not to mention the lack of simple maintenance and upgrade of crucial infrastructure due to the financial chicanery being used to divert those funds to keep the ponzi scheme and extraction rackets going.

I type this on a computer connected to a copper phone line that has not seen a stitch of upgrade since installed in the late 70's. Many of the service boxes along the line are still original and have out survived 2 company ownerships. The current co. brags of all the money they constantly spend on upgrades system wide but in actuality it's perhaps a few switchgear locations and adaptation of DSL which is barely faster than dial up but the vast majority of this fly over country's infrastructure is crumbling away.

Many of the electric poles are old and rotten and are still originals put up by Granddad and the neighbors when rural electrification first happened. In those days the power company would drop off poles and landowners would work at digging the holes and setting the poles to hasten the electrification of rural areas.

It's only a matter of time until some triggering event occurs and the whole thing comes apart. Tie this in with the anticipated 2024 or sooner financial collapse and there is some rough sledding coming for a lot of clueless people who should have gotten F's in History and Math classes.

Greyhound
Posts: 30
Incept: 2018-09-19

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432 Park Ave the tallest residential building in the western hemisphere at 1396 ft tall. Two penthouse level apts sold this year for 30 million each. Everytime I see it, I wonder, did these buyers never see the Towering Inferno as kid? Or on account of being perennial good fortune type people the thought of something going wrong there never occurs to them.
Tickerguy
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MCSNet's office was on the 26th floor of 2 Prudential Plaza in Chicago (the spike at the north end of Grant Park.) It was a very nice place, and well-located for what we needed in terms of access to fiber and similar.

With the power out it was a deathtrap. Yes, there were stairs. And?

HVAC in the building, whether for people or computers, was utterly reliant on circulation pumps and a central water system to carry the heat away and out of the building. Lose one and the area served has no HVAC on an immediate basis. Lose electrical power and the entire system is dead because NONE of the circulation pumps run. The systems all trip off on high head pressure within seconds. It's not just your suite that has to have power for the compressor and fans -- the central circulation system has to ALSO be running, which means IT needs power, or you're done.

When the "Chicago Flood" happened a few places that were cut off by their electrical vaults being flooded brought in generators on trailers and ran cables up the stairwells. It was a MAJOR fire code violation and risk that was ignored due to the situation; a SECOND event would have utterly rat****ed the building. A 20 story high air plenum open on both ends creates a draft that would make a fire impossible to put out, and once you string electrical cables up that stairwell you CANNOT close the doors without removing them, which is going to be impossible too if the floor is on fire. That's the reason stairwell doors in any multi-story building are required to be on hydraulic closers with crash bars to open them and they ALL have switches on the frames to alert building security if they're propped open or the doorway is obstructed, never mind being constructed of VERY fire and penetration-resistant material for walls (e.g. concrete) -- it's NOT the theft risk, it's that IF there is a fire and you have two or more of those doors open it creates an instant and impossible-to-stop draft source. Once a fire gets going with what amounts to a "forced air" oxygen source you're completely and utterly ****ED.

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Winding it down.

Mangymutt
Posts: 1056
Incept: 2015-05-03

Vancouver WA
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Quote:
deferred maintenance (almost-certainly.)


Most shops have a saying "If it ain't broke, don't fix it", well until last night it wasn't broke. But guess what this morning it's fixed. My guess is there is that "one Guy" with Con-Ed who could tell you everything there is to know about that section that went out. "Hey George, sector 123 just went out" George: "Was it from manhole cover xyz?" "Yea" George: "Grab the insulators for the x27, make sure the switch is off, hand string the jumpers with the new insulators and reset the switch" "Hey George how did you know to do that" George:"Dude, if you knew knew..if you only knew...Dude so much needed to be replaced down there. Now leave me alone, I am enjoying looking at Orion from my rooftop"

Just like groceries, fuel, or clean water, most people do not put any thought into it's source, how do we get it, what does it take to get it and what happens if something interrupts that flow. Yea 60 K people were effected last night, but it was over before it ever started. What happens if George is on vacation, gets run over by a bus or doesn't have the answer and even one section of NYC is impacted for more than a day.

Yea, yea everyone played nice last nite, because it was a unique inconvenience not an emergency, everyone still had their iThinies and phones working, they were entertained. Everyone still had access to water, ice cream and perishables remained frozen and it happened at night with goodish weather.

All in all, NYC and it's residents did a decent job handling their unique inconvenience. Let's see how things unfold if power goes out and unrestored for more than 72 hours.
Mangymutt
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Vancouver WA
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Quote:

It's magic!

The **** it is


Why just the other day I was riding my unicorn through Enchanted Forrest, we were picking gumdrops for the lollipop trees and we came upon a river of chocolate, so we followed if for a while. We soon came to a bridge made out of rainbow, that tasted as sweet as honey. On the other side of the bridge Sasquatch and Santa Clause were at a table working on something. They beckoned me and my unicorn to cross the rainbow bridge so we did. And Sasquatch explained to me that he and Santa just invented a battery that runs off of the **** politicians spew from their mouths every day. And they estimate AOC alone forcefully expels enuff useless information that we now have enuff free power to build another moon, but this one out of cheddar instead of Swiss.


So you know exactly were you can place your sarcasm about "No ****ing Free Energy"

smiley
Drifter
Posts: 293
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Pacific Northwest
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Connections-- timeless. Human lives sucked until the Industrial Revolution. Someday we'll fubar all those achievements.

Acquaintances who live in Seattle and Portland are always telling me that when the shtf, they are driving east to hole up with me.

I always say, 'Uh, no.' First, they'd never make it-- good luck just getting out of town. Second, they've had ample time to pull their weight by having cases of freeze dried (or whatever) put in storage here. Like most progs, they live for today and expect fellow citizens to deal with their needs of tomorrow.

Anybody that shows up at my door with just a bag of chips is in for the mother of all banhammers.
Asimov
Posts: 111484
Incept: 2007-08-26

East Tennessee Eastern Time
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Never seen connections, but glad to watch it now.

Thanks.

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It's justifiably immoral to deal morally with an immoral entity.

Festina lente.
Whitehat
Posts: 1144
Incept: 2017-06-27

The People's Republic of New York
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@Oliver1665 -- thanks for posting the video. i remember viewing it many decades ago. from a different time when we taught young people how to think about things not have things think for them.

a little insight into the NYC issue last night as i sometimes live there. the electricity workers actively know the condition of their equipment for self-preservation purposes and the extensive experience and training that they possess. anyone who has critical equipment of any type or even likes to keep an old car reliable develops a pattern of observation and sense of when things are starting to wear to failure. these enhance reliability. in my days as a site manager i would use heat sensing cameras to see where the inherent oscillation of AC current was working connections that needed to be re torqued. FYI: every couple of years check the lugs on your breaker panels and the connections to the individual circuit breakers.

the electrical workers ignore things because the fixes due to crisis failures are extremely profitable for them. we are talking about unlimited premium overtime with all sorts of unionized nifties. unless it is due to gross negligence, there is no issue since there is the universal excuse of old equipment. a replacement and upgrade schedule is done at regular pay and often contracted out for competitive bidding. emergency replacements and upgrades are done by the utility regular workforce under a beneficial situation. any supervisor or worker who makes a case for something being close to failure or condition of equipment sees his career not going good places. the motto is to fix it when it breaks. there is also administrative contribution to this such as cost cutting. there are many players contributing to this across the country.

there is a contest in NYC to see who can rip off more, the city workers or the utility workers.

a lot of the dysfunctional element has been priced out of the city, so a failure would probably require a longer window to lead to rioting as historically seen. there is a line that the NYPD used when outfitting the cops for one bad historical night, "hats, bats and jeans." it meant motorcycle helmets, batons and dungarees. all that they could do was beat rioters, take Polaroid pictures of arrestees and have mass lockups. in the end almost all charges were dropped.

there is very little that the police can do once the rioting starts. only automatic weapons or many deputized and armed agents and a commitment to kill ends the situation. and as a society we have never had the guts to do it.

i remember hiking out of the city one particular event, people walking over bridges and through tunnels. even in good weather it is quite a journey.

actually one discussed scenario for a major destructive event is long term energy rationing where zones are allowed current at a set limit for certain days with non-essential activities being prohibited including home AC and swimming pool filters.

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There are two ways to be rich: One is by acquiring much, and the other is by desiring little.
snow, seasons, distance and dirt roads: SSDD
"Be not deceived; God is not mocked; for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap" (Gal. 6:7)
Bagbalm
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Just North of Detroit
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I can find all sorts of friends who will say people have to be crazy to live in New Orleans/ California/ Seattle/ hurricane zones...
Yet they are in denial that there isn't anywhere in the US that most of the population is dependent on very delicate infrastructure for food, water, and power.
Tickerguy
Posts: 157993
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@Bagbalm -- There's ******n near NOWHERE that isn't reliant on it.

People think they can bug out somewhere. Ok, you bugged out. Now go turn your power off.

Tell me how long you last if you can't turn it back on.

If you have STANDING water on the property it is likely unsafe to drink. Ditto if it's flowing (e.g. a creek, etc.) Can you make it safe to drink? For a while, probably. Until you run out of what you need to make it safe to drink.

If the property is served by a well you're ****ed instantly. Ironically you're better off on city water, at least until THEIR backups fail. Then you're ****ed there too.

Can you capture/cistern enough water? For a while, maybe. But again, see above on the "I have water on property"; it's one thing to bathe in it, it's another to drink it, and you need to be able to drink it. ANY sort of water-born ****-you (e.g. diarrhea) in a grid-down circumstance can kill you. Personal hygiene becomes a big problem, real fast.

Got farm? That's nice. How do the animals get water - and for how long? See above.

Got generator? Start it when the only thing making noise outside is the birds and everything alive within a mile knows you're there. Worse, all the two-legged things know there's power, and some of them are probably REAL thirsty. Now what?

I can disappear into the backcountry and survive personally on what I can carry for a while. Water isn't the big problem on a PERSONAL basis from a drinking perspective; I can purify it sufficiently to make it safe to drink. So for a week or two that works, but after that I have the same problems and the last thing I want to see is ANOTHER HUMAN. Especially if I appear to be still mostly-ok; said other human will assume I have a water source with me or some way to make one usable, and as soon as he can jump me, he will.

But in a residence it's a different story. Yeah, I can make a small amount of water safe for consumption, and we can do that for a while. But I dare not start a generator. You can do it around here after a hurricane because a lot of people have them and everyone who doesn't knows if they get within 100' of yours they're going to get shot. But when there are 10,000 people without them and 10 with, well, you can shoot 5 or 10 of them but the other 90 are going to kill and eat you.

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Winding it down.
Stee_man
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Incept: 2011-12-08

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"A few hundred dedicated men, willing to die in pursuit of making it really bad, could do exactly that."

How many Chinese intelligence agents do we have posing as tech workers? Tens of thousands, easily. Same with other frenemies, only in smaller numbers.

Walking around cities that have disabled subways or traffic signals... really hard to impossible. You need a bike and the good heath to use it. Living in a building that requires constant use of an elevator. An awful way to live. Being packed into a crowded closet with strangers, just to go for a walk outdoors. I don't know why anybody chooses that.

I live within easy walking distance of a clean river. I would just need a life straw to drink it. But losing refrigeration, heat and fuel would be a real bitch. Thank goodness we have a nuclear deterrent. The leftist morons would do away with that if they could.
Radiosity
Posts: 244
Incept: 2009-03-05

Sunny UK
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Last year the local substation had a fault. Some small thing burned out or otherwise went wrong. Doesn't really matter what it was. Whole area was without power for ~3 hours, at which point it was fixed. I commend them on the speed.

However, just that ONE substation going down took 4000 homes with it. So yeah, it doesn't take much to completely black out whole areas even in a relatively small town like mine (~30k people... which is double what it was 20 years ago when I first moved here. Gotta love that unlimited immigration).
Stee_man
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Karl, I'm glad you mentioned EMP and dismissed it. People who worry about that are science challenged.

It's not useful as a weapon. The effects would be on random small areas. Impossible to predict where. Meanwhile, you just advertised yourself to a very large response that is highly targeted.
Mangymutt
Posts: 1056
Incept: 2015-05-03

Vancouver WA
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Quote:
Water isn't the big problem on a PERSONAL basis from a drinking perspective;


Most people take H2O completely for granted. Although it would cause you discomfort you could go a week with out much food, but perhaps 1 good day without water. You have more than just yourself and depending on who they are, good luck on making it a day without water.

Water is heavy and awkward to pack and travel with, at 8lbs per gallon weight becomes a factor quickly, if on foot how are people going to carry more than 2 gallons?

Water is earths most abundant resource it is literally everywhere, but if a person does not know how to safely harvest it from various resources, they NEED to stay close to their source. In a catastrophic situation the last thing you want is herds of people ****ing up your water source. One dirty diaper (Adult or child) could potentially ruin it for hundreds of others. Plus the bad guys are going to figure this out well before common folk, if you are not willing to fight for your water supply, you will be out on your ass.

Yup if you learn to harvest your own drinkable water supply on the go, you can stay ahead of and away from trouble. Hopefully we never reach that point, but given the number of people who believe Walmart has an endless supply of bottle water on their shelves, things could get ugly really really fast and the last thing a thinking person wants is to be stuck with 100's if not thousands of dirty filthy people messing up your H2O
Redjack
Posts: 159
Incept: 2018-01-29

Iowa
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A story I often tell.

Many moons ago at Iowa State, I took a logistics class.

The professor stated that he could shut down any major city with a deer rifle and publicly sourced information. I didn't believe him, and he sent me to the public library with a list of things to look up.

He was right.

This is/was a perfect example of it.
Tickerguy
Posts: 157993
Incept: 2007-06-26
A True American Patriot!
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@Mangymutt -- Yep. I have the equipment to make other than materially-chemically-fouled water (which simply can't be fixed "on the go" by anyone) safe and drinkable. It'll last for a good long while, but not forever.

But what I have, while good for purifying a personal supply while doing things like hiking in the backcounry, is NOT sufficient for even a small group; divide its duration in usefulness by the number of people and things get dicey FAST. In a "grid down" scenario you have to assume you CANNOT restock said materials; when they're consumed they're consumed, and they ARE consumed.

One person who takes a crap in or near the water supply could easily foul it for EVERYONE who attempts to use it and if you don't catch that you only find out when it nails you. Further water is heavy, as noted; you're not carrying very much of it at a time, but if you're exerting yourself in any material way you need about a gallon a day, per-person, and that's to DRINK. Get hot and under heavy exertion and it can be double that or more. You're not going very far from where you can refill whatever you're carrying it in at that rate, never mind that without modern sanitation practices (which are impossible in such a circumstance) you can't stock it back either without the risk of contamination getting you; it has to be purified from whatever source you have and consumed within a short period of time as your containers will NOT remain sterile past their first use. This means you need access to said source daily.

You're basically worthless in a day without a water supply and dead in a couple more. You'll be unhappy but alive without food even over a reasonably extended period of time but if you think people won't loot, burn, riot and kill if the water's not working without hours to a day you're flat-out nuts.

Oh yes they will.

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Wakeupcall
Posts: 5511
Incept: 2009-06-08

Hampton Roads, VA
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Karl, why would well be worse? If unprepared, yes, bad. We are seriously considering a manual hand pump in the next year or two. Another option is this



Another cheap option is to boil water using a cinderblock rocket stove. Uses very little fuel. Or a solar oven to boil it. Cistern is replenished every rainfall.

We also have a couple sawyers for quick back up.

For us, water is not my worry. Yes, lots of worries. Water just not one of them.

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Tickerguy
Posts: 157993
Incept: 2007-06-26
A True American Patriot!
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Yes, you can make a "dip tube" contraption for a well, which certainly does work in an emergency.

A rocket stove works too. But you do need to boil the water, especially in a situation like this where the cap's been removed.

Whether a hand pump works depends on how deep the well is. It has to be a submersible pump or beyond 30' or so below where you are the lift even with a complete vacuum won't work. The old-style pumps that went down wells (hand pump style) have the pumping part all the way at the bottom and pump the water up, which is why you have to give them several strokes before they produce since they have to lift the water all the way up to the top.

Point being, you better have that sort of setup figured out BEFORE you need it, along with how you're going to sanitize the supply. And you also better not let anyone know you have it either, or those who don't are going to take it from you.

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Maynard
Posts: 1251
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gig harbor wa
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I lived somewhere where the town would literally run out of water by 8am for 4 months of the year. You adapt, and by evening the tower would start to fill back up. BUT what if the tower had no electricity.....Yeah it was hard enough as it was living that way. I carry a lifestraw everywhere.
Mangymutt
Posts: 1056
Incept: 2015-05-03

Vancouver WA
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Quote:
if you think people won't loot, burn, riot and kill if the water's not working without hours to a day you're flat-out nuts.


Certainly not for water or other basic resources, but I have had the opportunity to watch as people begin to panic. Granted the particular situations I refer to are very localized ie. While I was an EMT on a rural volunteer fire dept. But panic spreads like a wide fire, slowly at first and pretty soon out of control and people are acting....Insane.

If we ever have SHTF moment most of the people that have been taught to be "civilized" and "law abiding", to "wait your turn", wont get it figured out until after they have been stripped of their resources and left for dead. If they believe "law enforcement" is on their side, they haven't looked too hard to see what color the gang is wearing (Blue) and how well armed they are. A person might survive the blue gang better than the Ethiopian gang, but they sure aren't going to be getting any resources or help from the blues.

I seriously doubt and pray we as a nation goes through such an event but it is better to be prepared just in case, to know how to live on your own and avoid crowds. If SHTF I am NOT going to go were people are congregating.

As the 4th of July approached I was talking with a group of people whose children had moved out and really did not care to celibate the 4th, but they were going to take the time to go through their Emergency Kits and I thought THAT is a brilliant idea. A specific time of year where I would check all the supplies I think I might need. Change out old supplies, add new ones. If someone out there hasn't already taken the time to prepare even a basic "Go Bag" they might want to consider it.

Will the ever need it....Probably not.

But better safe than sorry.
Elkad
Posts: 634
Incept: 2009-09-04

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Propane (unlike other fuels) keeps forever. So you could store a large amount and not have to worry about rotating stock. Propane also keeps your food cold with an RV fridge. Still have the problem with the generator being audible though. But that's solvable. Bunker your generator, and beef up the exhaust system (probably vented over a very large distance). Still something you have to plan for (and invest in) though.

Solar panels basically have to be highly visible. Stand on any high point and look north, you'll see the south-facing panels catching the sun. If you only have a couple, people might ignore you at first. If you have a whole battery of them? You'll likely be a prime target.

If you are handy, you could rig a bicycle to a car alternator, and pedal to charge the batteries for your well pump.
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